Dry vermicelli

I have been trying to recreate this recipe since the beginning of time.

Every recipe I come across is always for the wet vermicelli, people keep thinking I am making boeber or Paiysor but alas NO, I am trying to make the dry vermicelli like they do in Temple.

Temple food is old school, no offense to the cooks or anything, but those are the tried and tested recipes. The recipes that have been passed down from generation to generation and those are the recipes that you do not mess with.

Take soji for example. Growing up soji was a dry dish with sultanas and nuts. If it was a wedding, then colourful nuts would be added to glitz everything up. Now try researching soji and every single recipe shows that the soji is swimming in the dessert cream and coloured nuts are all over the place.

Now try searching vermicelli, the only vermicelli that keeps coming up is kheer vermicelli and there is just so many tins of condense milk I can use in a week before my family complains that I am trying to kill them sweetly.

Last week, my mother got her hands on one of my Grans recipes and I didn’t even think twice about reading it. I really should have learnt, seeing as the previous day I had burnt the vermicelli, but no I never learn from my mistakes, I keep repeating them and as my parents would say, I keep forcing them to eat my flops.

My grans recipe required the use of rose water, I really didn’t think it would have the same effect as rose essence. You are always warned to go easy with rose essence because that essence leaves a bitter after taste, but nobody ever warns you to go easy with rose water. I mean in temple they use this like its essential.

The recipe itself was just want I was looking for, it had cooked dry like it was supposed to, there was no condense milk and I was really looking forward to eating it for dessert, I couldn’t resist , while it was cooling down I had a taste. The minute it touched my tongue is the same minute I spat it out. Disgusting, the 2 tablespoons of rose water gave this dish a terrible taste. I don’t ever remember my granny making this in her life time. I can still taste that rose water disaster on my tongue. Think I need a deep tongue cleaning.

I went back to my friend Google and I came up with another recipe, which seemed easy to make, no condense milk and thank my lucky stars no ROSE WATER/ ROSE ESSENCE or anything remotely related to rose, not even rose petals to garnish.

Verdict, my mum was soo impatient to try this out, she kept walking past the stove hinting that it smelt like the Temples and when my dad ate he, he loved it, or so he told my mother, when I asked how it tasted, he told me that he already ate two bowls, tomorrow his sugar is going to be sky high again… dramatic much. I thought maybe a little more sugar could be added, but I like sweet things and I actually ate all the sultanas in my serving, which speaks volumes in my books.


  • 2 x cups vermicelli , broken into smaller pieces.
  • 100g x butter.
  • 1 x cup castor sugar
  • 3 x cups water.
  • 1 x tsp cardamom powder.
  • 6 x cardamom pods.
  • 1 x cinnamon stick.
  • Handful sultanas.
  • Handful almond slivers.


  • Place the broken vermicelli in a pan and dry roast till golden brown.
  • Add the butter and allow to melt.
  • Stir in the cardamom pods and powder and cinnamon stick.
  • Remove from the heat.
  • Place the water and sugar in a sauce pan and allow to boil till the sugar has dissolved and remove from the heat.
  • Place the vermicelli back on the stove and allow to heat up.
  • Pour in the sugar water, nuts and sultanas.
  • Cover and cook till all the water has cooked off and the mixture is glossy.

Tell me what you think of this recipe